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Run Raleigh Half Marathon Race Recap

May 16, 2012

This should be the last of the back logged race reports.

I was actually kind of excited to run this race because it is it’s inaugural year. I had high hopes for good organization and lots of cool stuff.

They mostly delivered. However, I’m still sticking with my guns that I will NOT be running another half marathon in Raleigh for quite some time. The hills were still killer.

This was another training run for me, and it happened to fall on my 20 mile day for Flying Pig training. Once again, I got up uber early and pounded out 7 miles on the treadmill in about 70 minutes before getting ready and waking Brian up to take me to the race start.

At the start I met up with Regan, Debbie, Lisa, and Pam who I have consistently run with every single weekend and who have pushed me through the toughest runs.

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These ladies are seriously the best. I cannot sing their praises enough!

After waiting in a rediculous porta pot line, we all lined up, Lisa took off up with some of her friends (she was running for time) and Regan, Pam, Debbie and I hung toward the middle of the pack.

We all stuck together for the first 4-5 miles again at our 4:1 intervals (that seems to be our jam. Regan will tell you otherwise though) when Pam and I started to fall behind and Regan and Debbie took off up ahead.

The course was kind of boring out and back along western avenue in Raleigh and along some of the greenway. I was glad to see Brian at the 4/11 point on the course.

There were a lot of times when Pam and I kept saying WTF to each other, and I had to remind myself that I had just run 7 miles and that I could NOT be mad at my performance. This was just a training run for me.

Everything was fine and dandy until we hit mile 12.

DAMN that hill at mile 12. Thankfully we walked up part of it, then I took off at a slow jog up the remainder. After that, the finish line pulled us in. it was basically a straight shot.

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I finished in about 2:53 and some change I think. 20 miles were done and done for the day!

Over all, I was really pleased with the race organization. The water stops were a plenty even with powerade at some of them. I was smart though this time and brought my camelbak juuuust in case. The crowd support was good when it was there, but I mostly enjoyed running with my friends. Each of whom rocked the race. Lisa in 2:18, and Debbie and Regan about 10 or so minutes before Pam and I rolled in across the finish line. I’m proud of each one of them.

Thanks once again to B who never ceases to amaze me with his spirit and willingness to come and cheer me on. I know he secretly likes it.

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Myrtle Beach Half Marathon Race Recap

May 14, 2012

Better late than never! I feel like I owe a lot of race recaps and I’m on backlog… so you’ll see some scattered here and there throughout the next couple of weeks.

 

First off, I want to say how PROUD I am of my girl Suzanne and her Husband Wes for completing their first half in Myrtle Beach this past February

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They each just started running last JULY and they’ve already come SO far!

I’m also glad that Brian and his brother Kevin made the trip with us to Myrtle Beach to be our support crew and to hold their amazing signs!

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Little did they know they’d become famous with these signs.

Anyway, back to the beginning.

Race morning started just like every other race morning. You know the drill, 18 alarms were set, a bagel and PB was eaten and Brian, Kevin and I all boarded the shuttle from our hotel to the race start with about 10-15 other runners.

We met up with Suzanne at the start line and after a porta potty stop, we found our way into the starting chute.

There weren’t any corrals set up for this race. It wasn’t awesomely big, but they did have the half marathoners and the marathoners split on either side of the road so we started together, but separately.

Promptly at 7am they shot off the gun and we were off!

Suzanne and I had decided to do our 4:1 intervals, but because the start was so crowded, we ran straight through for the first couple of miles. I wanted to keep going but Suzanne was the only one of us who was smart and told us to stop and walk at the walk break. I’m glad we did.

We kept up with our intervals really nicely, until I started to have some tummy issues at mile 8. We made a quick porta potty stop and were on our way.

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I will say one thing; Even though the race was on the smaller side, it was extremely well organized and the crowd support was awesome (at least for the half) There were a lack of porta potties, but several businesses opened up early and had signs that said “clean bathrooms here!” It was pretty awesome to see everyone out in full force to support their town and us as runners.

Finally, we met up with Brian and Kevin at mile 11!

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They were just the boost of energy that I needed! I was starting to get tired at this point and was taking water from the water stations but had forgotten to eat some chews. I did shortly after I saw Brian and Kevin and they helped power me through the last couple of miles.

Then mile 12.7 hit.

Suzanne and I had played leap frog with this power walker for the last mile or so. We’d jog past her and then when we walked during our interval, she power waked her butt right past us! I thought for sure she was going to beat us to the finish.

Suz made sure that didn’t happen though. I believe we said something along the lines of  “This Effing power walker!!!” and BOLTED right past her on the last .1 stretch.

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We finished in 2:39 and some change! I’m so proud!

Raleigh Rocks Half Marathon Race Recap

May 11, 2012

This was definitely not one of my favorite races…

I remember now why I said after I ran City of Oaks half marathon a couple of years ago that I would never run another half marathon in Raleigh.

This race fell on my 18 mile day for Flying Pig training, so I got up extra early, popped out 3 miles on the treadmill, then continued on with my morning routine pre-race rituals.

My friend Pam (this was her first half) and her man came to pick me up a little bit before 7 as we made our way to the RBC center to meet our friend Michelle and her now Fiancée as well as our friend Regan at the start line.

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The gun went off about 20 minutes late because of parking issues and bathroom issues (not enough porta potties / lines were too long in the RBC center for the bathrooms)

We took off doing our 4:1 intervals for a loop around the RBC center and then the course followed a lot of the same roads as I remembered from City of Oaks. I thought that that race was hilly, this race was just plain miserable.

The first half wasn’t so bad and there was even a nice downhill from miles 6-7 back to the RBC center where we then took off for Umstead State Park (noted for its hills) around mile 8.

Here’s where things got kind of hairy…

looking at the race website, I saw that there was going to be water stops every couple of miles. Thus, I did not bring my camelbak with me for hydration. This was fine and dandy until we hit mile 6 and there WAS no water stations. There was also no water station at mile 8, and not even at mile 10. It wasn’t until we got to mile 11 that there was water. It had started to get hot at this point and the hills started to get higher and more prevalent.

Regan, Michelle and her Fiancée took off a little bit ahead of us, and Pam and I held back. We even walked up a couple of the bigger hills with no shame. Finally we hit a nice down hill at mile 12 that took us once more back to the RBC center to the finish line.

Thank goodness Pam and Regan had extra water on their belts, I would have seriously suffered! (thanks girls!)

I have never been more happy to see the finish line in my life! I am glad that this was only a training run for me, but I cannot say how disappointed I was in the race organization, lack of porta- potties and the poor planning in water stops. This race was in its 5th year running! One would think that they would have all of their kinks worked out by now.

Anyway, we all finished strong and mostly together. Around 2:44 and some change

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I would definitely not run this race again. The one thing that got me was reading the Facebook posts the next day. Both my friend Pam and I had commented how disappointed we were in the race, in a very constructive way. The people who run the Facebook account not only responded with a very nasty reply, but then proceeded to DELETE our comments and theirs completely! I could not get over that!

Has anyone ever had that happen to them?!

 

Now we know better for next time.

Flying Pig Marathon Race Recap

May 10, 2012

I came, I ran, I’m not proud of my time, but whatever, I’ll get redemption! IMG_8690

The morning started just like any other race morning for me. I set about 18 alarms and of course when they all went off I hopped out of bed and shut them all off and started getting ready. I choked down a bagel with PB on it and a banana. Sipped some Gatorade which I loaded with ice to water down for Brian to give me when he saw me throughout the race course. I obsessed that I was running a marathon to Teresa and her husband who came to be part of the cheer entourage while I let those nervous butterflies flutter in my stomach. 

At 6am I met Meghann and Kelly downstairs in the lobby of our hotel and we left and made the quick trip to the start line.

I left them at corral C wished them luck ( I knew they were going to rock) and headed back to corral F to wait for the start.

The race started right on time, and before I knew it I was passing Teresa, Chuck and HB at the start line!

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I was off! I was running another marathon!!

Meghann and Kelly and I have obsessed over the elevation chart for the Flying Pig course over the last 6-8 weeks through email,Facebook, Twitter and in person when we met up over the weekend. I knew that there would be a 4 mile climb from miles 6-10. I tried not to obsess too much over it while I was running. I just tried to make the best of the hills as I reassured myself that they’d be over soon. I definitely had to channel my girls Regan and Suzanne (Who are hill QUEENS) when I hit that point.

Side note: I was really hoping to do well at this race. I trained hard, got progressively faster as my training went on, and hoped I could come in under 5 hours . (chicago I had not trained as hard as I did this time around and came in over 5 hours) I had ambitiously made the decision to grab a 4:45 pace tat at the expo to keep myself on track .

I kept right on track for the first few miles, doing my 5 minute run , 1minute walk intervals and I kept the 4:45 pace group in my sights and was playing leap frog with them for a while.

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at mile 5 I had kind of lost them, I was SO glad to see Brian, Teresa, and Chuck though. I yelled, waved my arms and then saw the giant hill in front of me shortly after I passed them.

I continued up the hill at mile 6, and kept about 5 minutes slower pace than my pace tattoo had said. I was feeling good, my legs felt great despite the 4 mile climb and mentally I was in the game.

but god I was glad when the hill climbing ended at mile 10.5/11ish

Part of me wanted to split at that point with the half marathoners, but I knew that I was strong and I was going to finish well.

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I had been sipping water at all of the water stations starting around the 5k point. When I saw everyone at mile 11, I took some of the Gatorade that I had handed Brian before we left.

It tasted so sweet. I also ate a couple of my honey stingers at this point.

I continued on for the next few miles feeling good and strong and mentally well.

Then mile 15 hit.

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My back had started to hurt (I’m still not sure from what) and I had started to slow down my pace a bit. I remained about 7 minutes off of the 4:45 pace and kept thinking to myself that I could easily hit 4:55 and be really pleased with that.

I kept taking water and gatorade and mixing them at each water station. The sun was getting higher and higher in the sky and it started to get hotter and hotter and the course had little to no shade.

Literally… I was baking and I could feel it.

I met up with everyone again at mile 18 and was so glad to see them.

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I took some gatorade from Brian, ate some chews, and exclaimed that my back was really starting to hurt.

Teresa reassured me that I was looking fantastic and that I had this in the bag.

I took off and headed toward the highway.

I think that this was my favorite part of the course. Even though there was not a lot of crowd support, I felt fast, (of course it was on a downhill) and I picked a bunch of people off right and left. I was excited though when we finally got off the highway around mile 20 and into some shade.

I met up with everyone again around mile 22 and I was feeling really bad at this point. I believe I did a back bend and said “My BACK! F****!)  However, I had the 5:30 pace group in my sights. IMG_8665

I kept them there for a couple of miles, but I had slowed down so much and was hurting so badly that I eventually lost them. That’s when any sights for hitting my goal kind of went out the window and I just wanted to finish this thing and not die of heat stroke.

Miles 22-25 were pretty desolate the volunteers at the water stations were stellar in cheering us on (THANK YOU GUYS!) Despite the lack of support, the views of the Ohio river were pretty awesome for those few miles.

At this point, I was doing more walking than I was doing running. I couldn’t decide when my back hurt the most, when I was running, walking, stretching or stopping. I stopped several times throughout those couple of miles to do some down dogs. A couple of the Med-grunts on bikes asked if I was okay, I kept shooing them off. I just wanted to be done.

Finally, I hit mile 26 and took off at a moderate run.

Ps. Whoever decided to put the HILL at mile 26 should be seriously punished. Cruel… very cruel…

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My back was throbbing, but I kept trucking, I had Eminem rapping in my ear though my Ipod and I praised the good lord that I was finished!

I walked the rest of the way through the finishers chute, and when I got out, I sat in childs pose for a good 5 minutes until Brian , Teresa, and Chuck found me.

Thank goodness they brought flip flops. They told me I did great and I started crying and told them how upset I was at my time, and now I have to train even harder and run another marathon to redeem myself (not that I wasn’t going to run another marathon anyway, I was already planning before I ran this one)

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Official time was 6:01:30. Not too bad for a turtle… Winking smile I’m not sure still why my back started hurting the way it did, I have never felt anything like that before during any of my training runs.

Also, thank you for all of your encouraging tweets, texts and facebook messages. You guys are amazing.

Overall I had an awesome experience, and I would definitely run this race again. Probably the half though next time.

Here’s to some speed work this summer! Who’s with me!

Foodie Friday: Corn and Bean Salsa

October 28, 2011

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This is one of my favorite snacks. It tastes good on salads too.

What you need:

2 slices onion

1 can corn

1 can black beans

1 can pinto beans

1/2 green bell pepper

salt/ pepper to taste

2 tbsp olive oil

Juice from 1 lime

 

What you need to do:

1. rinse and drain your beans and corn, put them into a mixing bowl.

2. chop up your onion and your green bell pepper and throw them in with your beans

3. pour in your olive oil and your lime juice

4. add salt / pepper to taste

5. mix up and enjoy with your favorite tortilla chips!

 

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Wedding Madness Wednesday: My Bridesmaids

October 26, 2011

Welcome to another installment of WMW. It’s time to meet my bridesmaids! Are you ready?

Tash

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She is my BFF from nursing school. I honestly would not have passed and graduated if it wasn’t for her. She was my rock. We spent a lot of time studying, drinking beer in the library while we were studying and crying in our professors offices about how we were going to fail. I <3 her. enough said.

Diana

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We have been friends all through college. We weren’t very close though until Senior year when we lived together. She was my emotional rock during roommate drama, class drama, dance drama and life drama. She was there when I broke up with my long time boyfriend. In fact, she held my hand while we ended things over the phone. D is the best girl (mom) a girl could ever ask for, and I hope to keep her around forever and ever amen.

Sara

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Sara is my Dancer girl BFF. She and I bonded over many a dance class. We also struggled through nursing school and many an awful clinical together. I am so proud to call this chick my friend. She would drop anything at any given time for anyone and would give you the shirt off her back if you needed it. She is wonderful.

Caitlin

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She is my partner in crime. We lived together sophomore  year of college and we got into lots of trouble together. She is smart, kind, humble and wonderful. She recently graduated Law school and I could not be more proud of her! She is also the best friend that a girl could ever ask for!

Alaina

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Nain is my cousin, but also my partner in crime. I remember babysitting her when I was younger, and how I was the only one allowed in our family to play with her hair. I remember playing dress up with her and my sister and putting nail polish and make up on them. Alaina has grown up to be a beautiful young woman and remains to this day someone who is very close to me.

Sara Anne

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This chick is amazing. I love her more than life itself. She’s my best friend, one of my partners in crime and the best sis a girl could ask for. She’s been there through all of my big life’s events. she is beautiful, smart, athletic and everything that I was not at 16 years old.  We are friends by choice, sisters by chance. I love her.

Three Truth Tuesday: I Hate Halloween. Really.

October 25, 2011

 

Yes, you read that correctly. Out of all holidays that I celebrate, Halloween is definitely my LEAST favorite. Criticize me if you will, but I’m sticking to it.

That was truth 1.

Truth 2:

Just because I hate Halloween doesn’t put me above dressing up my dogs!

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Okay, this was from Christmas. I couldn’t find a picture of the pups from Halloween last year. Corbin was a bumble bee, and Tika was a squirrel. They were precious. Call me cruel, I know you dress your animals up too.

Truth 3.

Just because I hate Halloween doesn’t mean that I don’t love the candy part of it!

And, yes, in case you were wondering. While HB and the pups are handing out candy this Halloween, I’ll be sitting on the couch NOT watching scary movies and gorging myself on candy.

nom!

 

You know the drill, Tell me three truths!

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